Monday, July 16, 2018

Monday's Child is Full of Links!

Sorry to have been away. But I've been away. First in Erlangen and Munich, Germany. Then in Edmonton, in Northern Alberta.  Both really fun.  Back in Raleigh now....

To the links.... 

1.  Amazing application of pure fairness. The town would benefit from using an auction instead. And the individuals who "win" the lottery would benefit from allowing a secondary market. So, an interesting example for class.  The graveyard lottery, in Germany.

2. Why are wages not rising? Of course, in some areas, they are.

3.  George Will writes a column on baseball. And I like it. Perhaps neither of those things is surprising.  But it is a REALLY good column.

4.  Hindcasting global population densities reveals forces enabling the origin of agriculture

5.   Right to try.

6.  Nipples.

7.  The WaPo is upset with the Oklahoma incident because two citizens responded and killed the shooter. Apparently the faster action that likely saved lives is LESS important than the fact that having armed citizens made the situation "more complicated for police." As if our objective is primarily to make life simple for police. Citizens are pretty much on their own. As we already know....

8.  Dude had a bad day.  Why in the world was he insisting they pull over? Anyway, it didn't go well.

9.  I'm going to guess that this sort of thing is quite common. We only know about it because of the police body cams.  If police want to be respected, they'll need to be respectable.  But it's hard, because the state provides conditions where the worst will always get on top.

10. Some people assume that wealth may substitute for genetic fitness, meaning that rich morons will be over-represented in the population. But Mr. Darwin has ways of taking care of that. (The guy didn't die. But he did learn some wisdom, I hope).

11. Starfish v. Spider education systems.

12. Guilds? There is no guarantee that the "firm" in its traditional form is optimal in the non-traditional future....

13. Not only is "Dead Salmon" a color, the producer is unironically (I think) doubling down on it as being "magical."

14.  "How White People Handle Diversity Training." This may not be entirely true, but I bet it's also not entirely false.

15. Since it is not easy to climb up out of poverty, it almost HAS to be true that a dogged belief that one CAN climb up out of poverty is a prerequisite.

16. That word "foe" you keep using. President Trump, I don't think it means what you think it means.

17. Realistic Marketing: Bird Scooter edition.

18.  I have colleagues at Duke who sincerely believe that Cuba's labor system is non-exploitative, and that Cuba's health care system is the best in the world. These claims are both absurd.

19.  A better way to run schools...

20.  Okay, goodONya and all, mates. But does "naked gay farmer" really evoke "mental health" as an association, in the minds of most people? On the other hand, they are likely right that it makes people pay attention.

The Grand Lagniappe, Copa Mundial edition: 538 takes another one in the shorts. The average goals scored per game this Cup tournament was about 2.65.  The standard deviation was about 1.2 goals (actually, it was less than that, but let's say.)  That means that 538 made an almost 3 sigma error, assuming even then that "very few goals" is equal to "average number of goals."  Why do we even have a government, if people are allowed to make such bad predictions?











Wednesday, June 27, 2018

The Bluewater and the LMM


So. The YYM drove over to the beach compound for the night. We went for dinner, because that's what you do. Went to Bluewater, a tourist place but with a very nice view of the IntWat. I wore my "Dad clothes."

The LMM took a photo, but I can't post it, on which more anon. Will try, though. As soon as we sat down, the LMM decided that she would like to be the center of attention, as befits a Queen exiled to wed a commoner like me. So she kicked both her sweater and her purse into the ocean.

(Two things: 1. Why did she have a sweater? It's 95 and direct, bright sun where we are sitting. If you have to ask that, you don't know the LMM. She always needs a sweater. 2. Okay, she didn't kick it into the ocean. She kicked it into the IntWat. Nonetheless, there it was ten feet below the rail where we were peering over at it, floating, a purse/sweater clump of flotsam in nasty saltwater. Not Jetsam. Flotsam. Words have meanings....)

The LMM appeared to believe that if she just yelled LOUDLY enough at the purse/sweater clump, it would magically do what she wanted. To be fair, this works at our house, but then she is dealing with me, or the dogs, and we are all afraid of her, and have some capacity for independent movement. If she yells at home, then action is taken and things get done.

"I dropped my purse! I dropped my purse!" And pointing. Everything in the large restaurant stopped, and I think some people up on the highway bridge likely looked out their windows. The LMM is not large, but she has considerable vocal puissance.

I jumped heavily over the rail, and landed heavily down on the dock. Unsurprislingly, another fellow, aroused by the yelling, also jumped over the rail, and got there faster. (He was not as heavy). He fetched the flotsam, and delivered it to the LMM, dripping (the flotsam was dripping, not the guy, and not the LMM).

All the tables (well, the people AT the tables) around us started telling each other of times that they had had something similar happen. And giving advice about how to save the iPhone (rice. Always with the rice). Anyway, before long a little kid at the next table tipped over a big glass of iced tea, and won the "new center of attention award" away from the LMM. But for a few minutes, she was the "It Girl" of the Bluewater.

I'll try to post the pictures, if the rice works. We used the LMM's phone to take the pictures..... (With thanks to Donna Gingerella for the entertainment portion of the dinner, and a show).

Monday, June 25, 2018

Monday's Child is Full of Links!



1.  Interesting question: given that the "public" (that is, developers and construction companies) side is well-funded by tax dollars used for advertising and "education" programs about mass transit, is it illegitimate for private groups to try to balance the scale?  Even if it is the Kochs?  So-called mass transit tends to benefit wealthy neighborhoods whose residents want to go to sports events or go shopping.  If we really cared about mass transit, we'd end the stupid parking restrictions on new housing.  There is no "right" to free parking in densely populated urban areas. Just end the parking requirement, and the demand for mass transit will no longer be artificially suppressed by public policy.

2.  Rats devalue currency. I'm sure George Selgin has some Fed metaphor for us, but in this case its literally true.

3,  Wife sends husband back to jail.  She was right to do so, but still.

4.  Roger Stone is concerned that he might be indicted, because that would "suggest culpability."  Yes, yes, it would.  I understand the charges could be frivolous, and have to have innocent until proven guilty. But it would indeed be a bad sign if he is indicted.  I wonder if it's just a tactic to charge him with something, get him to plead guilty for immunity, and so on.

5.  Who are you going to believe? That outraged woman or some lying verbatim audio recording?

6.  If this is true, it is remarkable. And bad.

7. Rubies are red, sapphires are blue, but the Times just said, they're actually really the same mineral.

8. Prices, products, and wage stagnation. (tl;dr:  wages didn't stagnate) 

9. The case for free trade is unilateral. The case for free trade is unilateral. The case..... No, really, it's unilateral.  We should cut trade barriers even if our trading partners don't. If they want to tax their citizens, they get to do that. It says so in "The Big Boy Book of Governments."

10.  American see "media bias" everywhere. And they are not pleased.

11.  This is an actual refereed journal article. No, really. The dead cat is listed as a coauthor.

12.  Jubilee!  Or, pot jubilee, at least.  (In Hebrew tradition, Jubilee was a debt forgiveness year. Interesting incentive problems....)

13. There's a decent chance that within the next year Trump will start appearing in public wearing a uniform designed by some famous designer.  A military uniform.  If we keep doing stuff like this.

14. America is an idea. But it is not ONLY an idea.... And the part that is not an idea is fragile.

15.  Law schools need a new governance model.

16. The arguments for a "grand bargain" on immigration are not getting better.

17.  The Texas Health Department....standing for truth in pickles

Grand Lagniappe:  C'mon. Is it REALLY a surprise? I think we all knew....  Every once in a while, the cat gets a signal from the mother ship: "YOU ARE IN THE WRONG ROOM!  RUN!"  And off it goes, with an insane look on its "face." Alien.


Monday, June 18, 2018

Monday's Child is Full of Links

1.  News flash: People with below average income have below average income.  Seriously, these folks are shocked that poor people can't afford middle class stuff.  Does "middle class" just have no meaning?

2.  A list of summer reading lists.

3.  Why Canada should pay for blood plasma.

4.  It's raining octopus. That can't be right.

5.   J-Sess, the most evil AG in American history, actually quotes the Bible to support breaking up families.  If only there were some religion where the hero had been forced to hide from authorities were out to kill all the male children, and then had to live illegally under persecution. Maybe then we could understand people better. Or maybe if J-Sess had actually read Romans 13, all the way to verse 10, instead of just using the Cliff's Notes.

6. Netflix has a new "5 second rule." No eyeballin', there.

7.  Florida Man!

8.  Canada: You suck. Trinity Western decision is a blot on your copybook.

9.  Snake swallows woman whole.  I'm not convinced this is real. But it certainly is horrible.

10. Supermoon, in NYC.

11.  The "Data Science" course segment the EYM taught in Colombia.

12. The "Matthew Effect." Particularly prevalent, apparently, when a relatively unknown person, often a woman, is cited by a more famous person, often a man.  Later work cites the famous person who didn't actually do anything.

13.  Heterodox Academy. Full disclosure: I signed up.

14.  Not all sharing is done through markets. But much of it is now done through some software platform....

15.  Father Long's Sacred Nugget.

16.  This is a thing. Why?

Grand Lagniappe: Happy Father's Day to ME!






Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Supermoon

In NYC, the EYM took us to visit "Supermoon."  It's....well, it's this.

After we ordered (the pastries were, I grudgingly admit, fantastic, really something special) and while we were waiting for our order. There was a commotion.

A 40 year old woman and an extremely overdressed and overly made-up young woman (looked 15, could have been 22) came in and started demanding to speak to the manager. They wanted "...a box, for photographs. She's a blogger!" pointing to the younger woman.  I had never heard "S/he's a blogger!" used as an argument for "give me free stuff!" before, so I felt I was missing out.

They kept loudly demanding a free box of pastries and the chance to do some photos, because (and I'm totally serious) "She's a blogger!" This was said at least ten times, in an increasingly loud voice.

Eventually the manager came out, made the crazed women give back all the display items they had decided to just steal, and gave them a box with some pastries. The older woman took a bunch of photos of the young woman pretending to take bites, affecting surprise and / or delight, and so on. Then they finally left, after throwing away all the untouched pastries and the box they came in.

I got the EYM to take my picture, in front of the Supermoon boxes. And, I want the whole world to know:  "I'm a blogger! Give me free stuff!"


Monday, May 21, 2018

Monday's Child is Full of Links!


1. Lincicome talks to Goldberg.

2. State tax reform has had variable success, and failure.

3.  A good video. Not a great video, won't change your life. But some interesting info.

4.  Nick. On Tom.

5.  I've come to believe that most statements that start "Millenials LOVE....." or "Millenials HATE....." are usually pretty dumb, regardless of how the blank is filled in. But it is fair to ask: SHOULD Millenials love the market?

6.  Domestic disturbance in Germany. Man yelling at parrot, who won't shut up. But parrot doesn't say any words, though it can bark like a dog.  So it was more like man yelling at dog that wouldn't stop barking, though of course the dog was a parrot.

7.  Is tattooing actually beneficial, at least for the immune system?

8.  In praise of stolid clothing.  And Brooks Brothers.

9. The ideology of business schools.

10.  Remember how the History Channel used to show actual history?  And TLC was actually about learning? Then this happened.

11.  The complete NYU hooding ceremony. If you are interested, the EYM transcends corporeal form and evolves into pure energy at about 1:26:20 and thereafter....

12.  Selective exposure to misinformation: A Guess-Nyhan-Reifler joint.

13. Against libertarianism: A reading list

14. Nancy hanging with Mitch, and J-Mac hanging with Paul W.

15.  MAO'G on Maduro and Venezuela.






Monday, May 14, 2018

Monday's Child is Full of Links!







1.  Mummified monkey found in air duct. In Minneapolis museum.  In an AIR DUCT. I have to think that the month between the monkey dying and the monkey being moderately mummified had to be pretty smelly.  But maybe it was an exhaust duct?  Still....ew.

2.  And why would you have a gun in your "belly band" (?) while you roughhouse with your dog?  I qualified for a concealed carry permit. But I don't carry. Guns are dangerous. You are obliged, if you are going to carry a gun, to behave differently.  The poor pup was a lab/pit mix. Quite a sturdy fellow, I bet.

3.  what American history can teach us. David Brady's thoughts....

4.  AI and the end of capitalism.  Always with this end of capitalism stuff.  For Marx, it was industrialization. Far from the end of capitalism, it was the spreader of capitalism.

5.  Where is L-Mo gon git his tea and vegan muffin now?

6.  This is pretty amazing. Why would the black woman have to show her ID, when cops did not ask for the ID of the white woman.  If you have to show ID, then everyone has to show ID.

7.  Ollie.  Oh, Ollie. No, I don't think there is a useful comparison between NRA members and black citizens trying to live in Jim Crow.

8. The Middle East today is as complex, and dangerous, as central Europe in 1914. Or so sayeth LeBron.

9. "Assault weapons," explained.

10.  My good friend John Hood explains something that is hard to explain. Freedom is actually an economic strategy. And a good one.

11.  Wallets and return rates. A simple, not entirely scientific, but interesting experiment.

12.  Odd racial split: should NCAA athletes be paid?

13.  This is not news. French people believe that the collective is more important than individual freedoms.  Duh. The problem is always that "collective values" is just what *You* believe.  If the minority ever becomes the majority they'll be squealing Lockeans in a heartbeat.

14.  Amazingly, this IS news: Law School Faculty at L&CU vote to uphold academic freedom.

15.  Not sure this is correct. But the larger point, that it is PRECISELY people without language skills or economic skills who have become U.S. citizens, is clearly right. Nicholas Munger arrived in Guilford Colony in CT in 1651 (or so) and he had nothing.  But I'm glad he left. County Surrey in southern England was no place for a poor boy to try to live a life.

16. When disrespect by "elites" is a sign of merit, then only those with merit will be disrespected by elites. More simply, the constant gotchas and corrections by the self-important influencers of our established institutions of the left actually make people like Trump MORE .

17. Ben Stein does a FB remake.

18. One way to have more affordable housing would be to allow more housing.

19.  Amar has a good point. But it's not a GREAT point.   Things have to be pretty bad indeed before it's not possible for bumbling or meddling state action to make them much worse. 

20.    just not true.

21. Toys were Us.

22.  Lines from "Princess Bride" that are useful in grading student compositions....

23. 



The Grand Lagniappe:  Adam Dunn, King of the Four True Outcome Players.  The reason this is important is that now MLB is full of Adam Dunn wannabes.

Monday, May 07, 2018

Monday's Child is Full of Links



The EYM is home from Germany, and soon going to New York to defend his thesis.  So a strong EYM-focus on today's McIfol....

1.  Old people, the internet, and the end of times.  As I argued ten years ago, we (especially older people) depend on the "news" being verified and curated. The transition is hard.

2.  Along those lines:  that whole influence thing?  If it's important, it's fake.  Almost anything on the internet that seems important can be faked, and then why not fake it?  It's a problem.  But it may not be the problem that old peope think it is.

3.  Keep feet off the streets. That's why elites tweet.

4.  Of course, Jim Bakker has been selling fakery to the old and confused for a long time.  Still....really, Jimbo?

5.  Marx would have been 200. And he's still killing the sort of people he claimed to love.

6.  Why are so many conservatives upset about Baby Alfie, when they don't care about poor Alfonsito?

7.  We should denote length of time of Trump admin staff in terms of "Scaramucci"s.  That is, ten days.  As in, "That guy lasted three Scaramuccis. Pretty good, for a Trumpino."  The question: Will Giuliani last even one full Scaramucci?

8.  Kids can't be on their own, even on Sesame Street.

9.  I was willing to defend Pence for a long time.  But Arpaio?  Nope. D-Drez has some thoughts.

10.  Trump is winning by gathering all the groups that oppose liberalism. Both the new kind and the classical kind.  That's not actually winning, though, because it is not a program of what to do, only what to oppose.

11. Can smart contracts use blockchain technology?

12.  We don't need tariffs. We could just prohibit Americans from traveling abroad. Maybe we could even build a wall, to keep all that money at home.

13.  Figure 2, Panel A of this paper.  It appears that Donna Gingerella thinks she lives in a very large city, by the way....

14.  I don't know much about London; this may be completely wrong. But the young man calls out political leaders for their "supine cowardice," and that's always good. And he defends Sadiq Khan pretty convincingly, again given what little I know.

15.  This is one of the strangest things I've ever seen. I guess it makes me happy. But....seriously?

16.  Diana Fleischman being amazing in writing about sex robots.   (Her name means "Meat Man." She is aware of this.)

17.  For a standing ovation to mean "standing ovation," it can't be automatic.

18.  If you are a prospective grad student, these are the sorts of questions you should have for the Director of Grad Studies....

19. Drew Millard on Sexy Vegan. And some other stuff. There's a lot going on.  Including the new Robin Hood movie.

20.  Congress gives up. It's what Congress does.

21. Dang. I did not know this about till. Thanks to @bitteranagram. 

22.  It's dumb to claim you are at work when you are obviously not. But for the REASON that you are "obviously" not at work to be time-stamped charges on your University credit card?  Wow.  A "dedicated businessman" is charged with the heinous crime of "galavanting."  Who does he think he is, a professor?


Grand Lagniappe:

Art imitates life and makes a full circle, out beyond farce.  A truly remarkable video moment.  Stormy Daniels herself appears on the SNL cold open.  Good lord. 

Monday, April 30, 2018

Monday's Child is Full of Links!

1.  Jones Act, you are not good.

2.  The symbol of British democracy is rotting from within.  A metaphor, or just a fixer-upper?

3.  Economists are bad at Twitter.

4.  People fuss at each other on Twitter, about whether people who go to Hamilton can keep track of the Jazz game during the play.

5.  The price of losing respect for the MSM: People believe their dog can get autism from a vaccine.

6.  Turns out the DC press corps can dish it out, but they can't take it.  This is my "not surprised at all" face.

7.  When will AI exceed human performance, by specific function.

8.  This is...I'm not sure how to explain it, exactly.

9.  Of all the places to be a jerk and physically resist a police officer, I would not think an airplane was a good man. But Florida Man has to be Florida Man.

10.  Max the pup, in Australia, helps save 3 year-old Aurora. A sweet story. But also amazing, since Max is 17, deaf, and almost blind. 

The Grand Lagniappe:  Robin Grier sent me this piece about erotic significance of whale hips. I often mention that whale hips are an atavism. But, it turns out they are useful, just not to their original purpose.  Whales couldn't get busy without being hip, it appears.